Captains of Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Hong Kong addressed the Unimoni Asia Cup 2018 pre-tournament press conference at Dubai International Stadium earlier on Thursday.
The Unimoni Asia Cup 2018 trophy was also brought out for a brief photo opportunity with the six captains. All six leaders reflected a positive mood in each camp.
Rohit Sharma, Captain, India:
“Firstly we are very happy to be back here. We know the focus and we know what we need to do as a group, of late we have played some great cricket in limited overs, we have won quite a few series outside India, so hopefully this gives us another opportunity before the big World Cup. Everyone is looking forward to it, we will be focused on the job at hand, it is important in a tournament like this we take one game at a time and think about how we need to go and dominate that game, rather than thinking too far ahead.
“It is always exciting to play Pakistan, they have been a great nation and they have played some really good cricket of late, and we are looking forward to that clash, but again there are other teams here as well who are eyeing that title so all the games that will be played here will be quite competitive.”
Anshuman Rath, Captain Hong Kong:
“All of us are very excited to be here and it is an honour and a privilege to play against some of the legends of the game. We are just going to take it game by game, we are hungry we have worked very hard to get here.”
Angelo Mathews, Captain, Sri Lanka:
“It is a very important series for all the teams participating in it they are all excited, we have done our preparations and it is going to be an even contest and I wish all the teams the very best of luck. All the teams are quite even, and they are here to win and to play their best cricket. In this tournament if you lose one game you could be out of the series so you can’t afford to make too many mistakes, and you have got to be on your toes and play your best cricket.”
Mashrafe Mortaza, Captain, Bangladesh:
“This is a very important tournament for our team as well, and we have done our homework and we hope to do well, our first game is against Bangladesh and we are looking forward to it.”
Sarfraz Ahmed, Captain, Pakistan:
“First of all a great opportunity for all the teams to participate here, and hopefully people will have the chance to watch some great cricket. I believe it is better for us to go series by series and not look to far ahead to the world cup. We have a packed schedule next year, and you could say the journey to the world cup has begun. For now the focus is Asia Cup, and the effort is to improve ourselves so that by the time we reach the world cup we will have a fair idea of the teams strengths.”
Asghar Afghan, Captain, Afghanistan
“All the teams are very good teams here at Asia Cup, special congratulations to Hong Kong, they really deserve to be here. You can’t say any one team is the favourite at this stage because all the teams are here to win and they are looking good.”